Just in case you’re wondering, we’ll be re-running some of our best and most popular book reviews every other week from now on. They will be described as our Legacy Mysterious Book Reports. Send us a quick request if you have a favorite that you’d like to see again and we’ll do our best to re-publish it.
Legacy Mysterious Book Report No. 7
Published January 17, 2022
Mysterious Book Report No. 473
by John Dwaine McKenna
Told from three alternating points of view, The Yards, (Mysterious Press, $25.95, 308 pages, ISBN 978-1-61316-235-4), by A.F. Carter, is hard-boiled crime fiction at it’s best. It takes place in the imaginary mid-western city of Baxter, where the last of four meat-packing plants is on the skids and failing. It’s closure will leave the already troubled area where crime is rampant and the citizenry ravaged by poverty and drug-addiction, hopeless and destitute. That’s where we meet Git, the first narrator, and a tough, single mom who grew up on the ‘other side of the tracks’ in a place locals call The Yards . . . where the poorest of the poor live. Her full name is Bridget O’Rourke, and she’s out for a hard-earned—and scarce—night on the town, where she’s hoping for some short-term male company. She hooks up at a local bar with a guy named Brad Grieg and they head to a local motel for a quick bit of woof-woof and be gone that doesn’t turn out so well.
When Brad, who’s a heroin addict and a gopher for a local crime prince, (named Connor Schmidt, the second narrator), is found the next morning, shot dead and $18,000 in cash missing . . . a Baxter PD Lieutenant and the lead investigator . . . a woman named Delia Mariola (the third narrator) is on the hunt for the killer. And that’s only the first 75 pages of this fast-paced and well plotted yarn. As the story is told and the details become known, readers will almost smell the desperation, feel the grinding poverty and somehow, still retain a hopeful spark of redemption in this outstanding noir thriller. It’s many twists and turns come fast, unexpected and often . . . riveting your eyes to the page. It’s killer !!
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